And it’s on the relationship between the editor and the client (author).
A good editor will be able to decide how much editing a document needs and convey that cogently to the client.
Before beginning a job the editor should provide a written quote that details the agreed level of edit, the time it will take, delivery date and cost. If payment is to be in stages, the dates/stages and amounts need to be agreed and also detailed in the quote.
The editor should state at the outset, when first approached, if they require payment for appraising a document before providing a quote.
The client may well need help to understand what information they should be seeking. In other words, don’t stint on discussion.
A good editor works at building and keeping a good relationship with the client. They know it’s important the client believes in what they can do and trusts them to do it.
The bottom line is respecting what the client has done and then showing them how it can be improved.
If the editor finishes the job with the client asking if they’d be interested in looking at their next body of work, they’ve probably done everything right.
Next week: is fiction edited differently to non-fiction?